Field Management of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park

Marine parks zoning Whitsundays

Rangers and marine managers celebrate 40-years protecting the Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef was internationally recognised for its outstanding universal value with a world heritage listing in 1981. It’s the world’s largest coral reef ecosystem and includes around 2900 coral reefs, 600 continental islands, 300 coral cays and about 150 inshore mangrove islands.

Building the resilience of the Great Barrier Reef is central to the long-term future of this great natural wonder. Given the Reef’s size and complexity, we need to ensure environmental protection while allowing people to benefit through its sustainable use.

Through the Great Barrier Reef Intergovernmental Agreement, the Australian and Queensland governments have been working together for the long-term management of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Keeping the Reef healthy requires a collaborative effort. Reef protection and management is a partnership between many government agencies, Traditional Owners, stakeholders and community members, with activities both on the water and in the catchment.

Out on the water, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and the Queensland Department of Environment and Science, through the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service, operate a joint field management program for the marine and island national parks, encompassing the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and the Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park.

The field team delivers practical on-ground actions to protect and maintain well-functioning marine and island ecosystems that support economic, traditional and recreational uses of the Great Barrier Reef. Their work involves:

  • conservation and monitoring
  • incident response
  • welcoming visitors
  • upholding compliance.

Annual Business Plan Summary 2020-2021

Find out more about the Reef Joint Field Management Program’s direction and activities for 2020-21 by reading the Annual Business Plan Summary.

Insight Stories

Over 348,000 square kilometres of coral reef and its surrounds make up the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area– an area the Reef Joint Field Management Program has been working to protect for over 40 years in on-ground, practical ways. The Program is run jointly by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and Queensland Department of Environment and Science, through the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service.

We strive to bring the work of this Program closer to partners, stakeholders and the community. We invite you to view the first issue of “Insight Stories” – a biannual magazine featuring exciting case studies of the Reef Joint Field Management Program. Enjoy the read!

Business Strategy Summary

Find out more about the Reef Joint Field Management Program’s five year strategic direction by downloading the Business Strategy summary.

Annual report summary documents

Find out more about the joint Field Management Program’s activities achievements by downloading the annual report summary.